XR250R Pros/Cons

Just a quick background, my son has outgrown his crf230f and I have an oppurtunity to get a clean

older 96 XR250R at a price that I can afford to do any maint. or bling needed. Biggest enemy of this

bike is that it sat unused in a shop/barn for most of the last 6-8 years. What are the pros / cons of these models? Hard to kickstart hot or cold ? Any must do power up mods? Handling compared to

most other bikes? Any advise would be appreciated thanks.

Does it run now? Bikes that sit can be fine or never the same again so you'll have to make a judgment call. XR 250 are great bikes. Full size chassis and more power than the 230. Fit it with a 280 or 300 kit and they haul with the 6 speed. Even stock they have enough power on top to do pretty good and have great low end torque like all XR's.

Handling is good, best in lower speed tight trails. Stock power is soft but feels fast due to great low end response. Def more power and less weight than the 230.

Edited by michigan400

By now it is extremely dangerous. The best thing you can do is get rid of it. It’s practically a Bio hazard and has to be dealt with very carefully. Lucky for you that I have my (MRC) moto-removal certification and for a small fee I will dispose of it properlyJ. Whatever you do don’t kick it over or try and start it as it will become as the “sirens song” and you will never be free from the curse that is…  the XR.

Thanks mi400 , no wont run now still has the sh../ty gas from a couple years ago, carb gummed up, tank will have to be flushed

out. I heard it last time running, at that time it sounded great after a going over at the local bike shop. mi400 did you have one?

Are they hard to start by nature hot or cold? Do you know if Honda offers a power up jet kit? Any air box mods needed?

 

Sorry so many questions, I am just trying to research before buying.

By now it is extremely dangerous. The best thing you can do is get rid of it. It’s practically a Bio hazard and has to be dealt with very carefully. Lucky for you that I have my (MRC) moto-removal certification and for a small fee I will dispose of it properlyJ. Whatever you do don’t kick it over or try and start it as it will become as the “sirens song” and you will never be free from the curse that is…  the XR.

Helpful info!

Clean the carb and air filter, change the gas put the choke on and it will start.  Pump up the tires to 15 psi and giver!  Add a pipe and bigger jets and giver again.  Search this forum for mods people have done.

Not a 250 but a 400 myself. Ridden on them and with them before though and they are very capable bikes. Hard starting is usually from lean, stock jetting or improper technique if no other obvious problems. I seen a guy kick one like a 2t before until he was blue in the face. My partner walked up and said "let me show ya somethin" then started it on the 1st kick for him. Follow the drill and they start fine. Ignore it and hate life! Lol!

I've owned several XR250s and yes to the most of the above, however they are only slightly heavier than a 230.

A CRF230 is 249lbs with a full tank, I weighed a 87 XR250R wo fuel at 255lbs, add a gallon of gas and it is over 260. 

But a 230 just feels heavier and I don't know why.

Go to a dealer and grab a 230 by the handlebars and tilt it back and forth sideways, then do the same to a CRF250R or X (the X is the same weight as a 230).

 

The XR250 will have better suspension than a 230 and a full size cockpit.  Nice engine, just need to learn the correct starting technique. No 2T jabbing at the kicker, always start from the top and do a strong full kick, using your body weight and extending your leg at the same time.  With practice you will be able to start the bike from the right side with your left leg, nice for awkward side hills.

Stock muffler is the quietest and equal or better power than the aftermarket mufflers.

Do the Gordon mods and enjoy the ride.

IMO a 280 or 300 would be a real nice mod but overkill for trail riding unless you upgrade the suspension.

 

If he really likes the 250 the 96-04 version is a much better bike for a move up.

Read Gordon's Mods for the XR400 and my XR400 FAQ.

 

Information for the XR400 applies to the XR250 except for:

  • the jetting specs
  • suspension info  (XR250 is compression adjustable only.)
  • five speed vs six speed.

 

You can find those by searching this forum.

 

The XR250R is a great bike.   Don't expect a 250 MX bike performance.   Do expect good reliability.

 

The carb may need to be scrubbed out.   A badly rusted bike should be considered a "basket case".   Pass if the outside is rusted or the oil is black.   Or buy if for cheap knowing if might be a project.

 

Best thing to get an XR running is put a new plug in it.  Forget cleaning the plug, get a new one.  You will need the XR250/400 Honda plug tool.

 

I have my starting method in the FAQ.   Applies to the XR250 too.   Not sure if XR250's are as weird about checking the oil.  See the FAQ.

Edited by Kev_XR

Read Gordon's Mods for the XR400 and my XR400 FAQ.

 

Information for the XR400 applies to the XR250 except for:

  • the jetting specs
  • suspension info  (XR250 is compression adjustable only.)
  • five speed vs six speed.

 

You can find those by searching this forum.

 

The XR250R is a great bike.   Don't expect a 250 MX bike performance.   Do expect good reliability.

 

The carb may need to be scrubbed out.   A badly rusted bike should be considered a "basket case".   Pass if the outside is rusted or the oil is black.   Or buy if for cheap knowing if might be a project.

 

Best thing to get an XR running is put a new plug in it.  Forget cleaning the plug, get a new one.  You will need the XR250/400 Honda plug tool.

 

I have my starting method in the FAQ.   Applies to the XR250 too.   Not sure if XR250's are as weird about checking the oil.  See the FAQ.

Thanks KEV_XR good info and I will check out the FAQ's. The bike is a 96 model seems the specs showed weight closer to crf250 dry weight. Does this model year have automatic decompressor or manual lever?

Thanks KEV_XR good info and I will check out the FAQ's. The bike is a 96 model seems the specs showed weight closer to crf250 dry weight. Does this model year have automatic decompressor or manual lever?

The 96-2004 XR250's are almost the same.   Just a few parts updates.   The XR250R has both a manual and automatic compression release.

 

My friend bought a new 1996, then found a new 1995 on sale, so he bought it too.   He said they were almost the same, unless ridden back to back.   However, he did develop a preference to ride the 1996 XR250.   The 1996 has a bit quicker steering than the 1995.   The 96 was used in Oregon for dodging trees, the 1995 went to Baja.

The 250 is a great very reliable trail bike, I have owned several over the years. The '96 and later models are best, dry sump engine with a bit more grunt than previous models, redesigned frame, improved suspension. The best mod for the money is suspension upgrade, revalving and respringing for your weight and riding conditions. Boring to a 77mm piston improves the already decent torque characteristics. A pumper carb or a 34mm Mikuni flat slide improves throttle response. For a stock engine, it is difficult to improve on the stock muffler with the baffle removed. Clean the carb, put in a new spark plug and fresh gas is probably all that is needed to get if fired up.

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